Carpets as storytellers: Floorwear Artworks in Helsinki’s new library
Architects, designers and planners all over the world use the customization service of German Floorwear brand kymo. Kymo’s THE ATELIER service offers the possibility to create carpets, custom-made for each project. Colours, forms and sizes, material quality and durability – partnering with kymo allows for the extra degree of freedom to meet the demands of your project. The flooring experts provide you with all the tools you need to cast your vision in Floorwear. Unique rugs and carpets created with THE ATELIER equip hotels, retail boutiques, offices – and recently the landmark library in Helsinki.
Helsinki’s central library opened in December 2018 and carries the poetic name “Oodi” (“ode”). The impressive new construction is located in the heart of the city at the Kansalaistori Square opposite of the Finnish Parliament.
Within a short amount of time, the architectural sight became a major visitor attraction. Curious tourists from all over the world as well as Finns that live in the capital flock into the library building and use Oodi as a new meeting point. Because behind the spruce façade of the elegantly curved building with its wavelike roof is a lot more than just a big collection of books.
On an area of more than 17,000 square metres and three main floors, besides the actual library, there are exhibitions spaces, workshops, music and photo studios, a coworking space, a restaurant and a cinema. Every Oodi visitor can use this diverse offer. They can visit courses and lectures, make music, work creatively with the help of 3D printers and sewing machines, meet friends – and read books of course. This extraordinary library is designed as a kind of public living room, where citizens and visitors of the Finnish capital equally feel at home. The top floor has the promising name “book heaven”. The light-flooded book landscape with wooden floors, galleries and an organically vaulted ceiling that actually looks like a cloudy sky, is a place to read and relax. Between white book shelves and high trees bigger and smaller seating areas invite to linger. When creating a cosy living room atmosphere, carpets must not be left out. The carpets in the central library Oodi are accessible works of art that were designed in cooperation of Finnish designers with Koolmat Finland and produced by kymo’s custom built service THE ATELIER.
Maijala, Piia Keto, Matti Pikkujämsä, Sakke Yrjölä and Jenni Rope focus on Finnish literature. The inspiration came from either famous writers or single works. The carpet of designer Piia Keto is an hommage to the author Minna Canth.
Seven carpets, seven different designers and one common theme: The drafts of designers Laura Merz, Aamu Song & Johan Olin, Marika
The illustrator and author of children books, Marika Maijala, took characters from various Finnish fairy tales and made them the heroes of her carpet artwork. This carpet is very famous with families: children gather around their mother who reads them from a book from the library – or makes up a new story with the help of the cheerful characters from the carpet.
In close cooperation with the seven designers, kymo transformed their drafts into exclusive Floorwear. The hand tufted carpets have an impressive size: six metres long and four metres wide they offer a lot of space to get comfortable with a book – sitting or lying down. Everything that serves the comfortable reading experience is allowed in the library Oodi. The material combination of 80% wool and 20% polyamide is cosy and durable at the same time and therefore perfectly appropriate for the property area.
Storytelling has always been a vital part in the design of carpets. Patterns of a classic hand-woven oriental carpet are inspired by the everyday life of the nomads. The artistic and unique Floorwear by kymo for the central library in Helsinki will continue this tradition: each and every carpet tells its own story and takes the observer into another world – similar to the books that are on the shelves here and captivate the readers’ attention.
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